Want to improve your mental health? Go for a walk.

Want to improve your mental health? Go for a walk. People who exercise have 43% fewer days of poor mental health.

Want to improve your mental health?
Go for a walk.

People who exercise have 43% fewer days of poor mental health.

It’s a common piece of advice: that exercise is pretty good for your mental health. A huge study published in the journal The Lancet Psychiatry has found that literally just walking can improve your mental health.

Individuals who exercised had 43% fewer days of poor mental health in the past month than individuals who did not exercise. All exercise types were associated with a lower mental health burden (between 11.8% and 22%).

The study of 1.2m people appeared in the Lancet Journal on August 8th 2018.

Competition #2: School kids – take a photo walking to school to win

School kids: Take a photo of something you love or find interesting as you walk to or from school. Use the hashtags #walktoberSA and #way2go to enter our competition for a chance to win a weekly prize. Thanks to Scout Outdoor Centre there are two $50 vouchers up for grabs for each school week.

The competition will run for the first 3 weeks of Term 4.

More walking = more fun = less cars = safer children.

Looking for some tips to help you plan your family’s active travel to and from school?
Visit the Way2Go website at dpti.sa.gov.au/Way2Go or Google “Way2Go families”.

View what others have shared.

The competition commences on Monday 14 October and closes on Thursday 31 October. Competition prizes will be announced weekly on Monday 21 October, Monday 28 October and Thursday 31 October. View the full Competition Terms & Conditions.

Good luck and enjoy a walk to or from school! You’re just two feet from some of the best places in South Australia.

This October there are two competitions:

  • Competition #1: ANYONE: Share your “view from my walk” photo for a chance to win a weekly prize throughout October
  • Competition #2: SCHOOL KIDS: Take a photo of something you love or find interesting as you walk to or from school. Use the hashtags #walktoberSA and #way2go to enter our competition for a chance to win a weekly prize during Weeks 1, 2 or 3 of Term 4

The competition is part of Walktober – celebrating walking throughout October.

Week 1 Winners of “View from my walk” Competition

The winners for our first week of our “view from my walk” competition are:

Thanks to Scout Outdoor Centre they have each won a $50 voucher.

Throughout October share your “view from my walk” photo using the hashtag #walktoberSA to enter our competition for a chance to win a weekly prize. Thanks to Scout Outdoor Centre there are two $50 vouchers up for grabs each week throughout October.

Take a walk in a nearby park, along the beach, along a river, in a national park or on your walk to work – anywhere in South Australia. With over 600 ideas of places to walk around SA there’s always somewhere nearby to explore on foot.

View what others have shared.

View the Competition Terms & Conditions.

Good luck and enjoy a walk! You’re just two feet from some of the best places in South Australia.

This October there are two competitions:

  • Competition #2: SCHOOL KIDS: Take a photo of something you love or find interesting as you walk to or from school. Use the hashtags #walktoberSA and #way2go to enter our competition for a chance to win a weekly prize during Weeks 1, 2 or 3 of Term 4
  • Competition #1: ANYONE: Share your “view from my walk” photo for a chance to win a weekly prize throughout October

The competition is part of Walktober – celebrating walking throughout October.

30 Evening walks to enjoy now that Daylight Saving has started

With daylight savings short after-work walks are a great way to get out and experience the sunshine.

We’re showcasing 30 short walks around Adelaide along rivers, the coast and metropolitan parks. All are an hour or two, or up to three hours, so are ideal for after-work.

Looking for some more adventurous hikes in nature?

Check out our accompanying article:
45 Bushwalks close to the city for evening hikes

Throughout October we’re celebrating walking with walktoberSA.

30 Evening walks to enjoy now that Daylight Saving has started

Blackwood Forest Recreation Park1.

FOOTHILLS: Blackwood Forest Recreation Park

Walk suitable for dog walking

A small park in the hills is popular for walking the dog off-leash. A great place to take the kids to explore the pine forest, the creek and Sturt River, you can walk a 1.4km loop here.

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50 Great SA Short Walks and Hikes for Kids

There are loads of great short walks and hikes around South Australia for kids, with opportunities to explore rock formations, big trees, caves, creeks, waterfalls and see wildlife. And with many taking in playgrounds, why not pack a picnic and enjoy a great family day out.

We’ve listed some of the best ones below.

Throughout October we’re celebrating walking with #WalktoberSA.

50 Great Walks and Hikes for Kids

Thorndon Park loop around lake1.

Thorndon Park loop around lake

Walk suitable for prams and strollers Walk suitable for those with mobility issues including wheelchairs

1.5km, 1 hour

There are numerous walking trails at Thorndon Park that loop around the lake. Walking trails take you throughout this photographic location and past unique attractions like the water tower, natural wetlands, and a giant chess board. It easy to make a couple of different loops of the park and lake.

Access from Thorndon Park Reserve at Paradise.


Wynn Vale Dam Circuit2.

Wynn Vale Dam Circuit

Walk suitable for prams and strollers Walk suitable for dog walking

2.8km, 45 mins

Wynn Vale Dam offers visitors and locals a serene outdoor experience. You can enjoy a picnic with a water view, a stroll along the boardwalk, and some quiet time to take in the tranquillity.

There is more to explore if you head (anti-clockwise) past the resident horses to the children’s playground featuring slides, sea-saw and swings. Toilet facilities are situated along the southern edge of the dam.

You can walk around the lake itself (950m), or walk from Grenfell Road on the Wynn Vale Dam Circuit (2.8km return). The marked trail is a shared-use path, and has markers every 200m, and begins near the Jubilee Lake, near the footbridge on Wynn Vale to Valley View Walking Path which crosses Grenfell Road.

Access from Park Lake Drive.


Woorabinda Bushland Reserve Loop3.

Woorabinda Bushland Reserve Loop, Stirling

Walk suitable for prams and strollers Walk suitable for dog walking

5.4km, 2-3 hours

A cool, quiet forest oasis, filled with a cacophony of birds or frogs. Woorabinda Lake is a highlight, with a path circling the lake passing reed beds, picnic benches, boardwalks and a bird hide.

The walk around the lake is suitable for prams.

Access from Stirling, off the South Eastern Freeway.


Wirraparinga Trail Loop, Brownhill Creek4.

Wirraparinga Trail Loop, Brownhill Creek (Mitcham)

Walk suitable for dog walking

5.4km, 2 hours

The Wirraparinga Trail Loop meanders along the Brownhill Creek valley, through Brownhill Creek Recreation Park. A narrow creek flows through the steep-sided valley, with majestic river red gums, some more than 300 years old.

Walk along the trail past the bridge, and explore the creek.

Access from Brownhill Creek Road, just up from Mitcham.

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Easy, Regular Walking at one of Parkrun’s 35 South Australian locations

With 35 locations around South Australia each Saturday morning, Parkrun welcomes walkers as well as runners.

Parkruns are free, socially-focussed 5km community events. Everyone in the community is invited to get involved – as walkers, runners and volunteers.

It’s a great community, you’ll meet new people, and enjoy the coffee afterwards at a local cafe or meeting place.

Physical activity is good for everyone and can have particular benefits for Australians aged 65 and over – for example, more energy and less fatigue, reducing the risk of falls, helping maintain physical strength and balance, improving cognitive function, preventing loneliness and helping people stay independent for longer.

The events are truly intergenerational and can be enjoyed together in the great outdoors by people of all ages.

Parkrun registration is free at parkrun.com.au/register. Just print your unique Parkrun barcode, which is then valid at any Parkrun anywhere in the world every Saturday morning. Events begin at 8am and are held every week of the year.

Find a location near you, with 35 around South Australia there is sure to be one near you (“>view by map, or list below):

Read more about how the Heart Foundation Walking and Parkrun are working together during Active Ageing Week to promote the opportunities for people to undertake regular walking.

50 Pram and Wheelchair Accessible Walks and Hikes

Adelaide and South Australia has many walking trails and hiking paths that are accessible to prams, strollers and people with mobility issues, including wheelchairs. We’ve outlined some of the best ones below.

The walks can also be great for children to ride their bikes along with their parents walking beside them.

We’ve broken the list down into 3 sections:

  1. Adelaide Metro Area (29 walks)
  2. Bush Walks (13 hikes)
  3. Regional South Australia (8 walks)

Throughout October we’re celebrating walking with #WalktoberSA.

Here’s a short selection of great hikes

Section 1 of 3. Adelaide Metro Area

Adelaide Park Lands Trail (loop ring route)1.

Adelaide Park Lands Trail

Walk suitable for prams and strollers Walk suitable for those with mobility issues including wheelchairs Walk suitable for dog walking

Series of connected walking and cycling trails through the parklands which loop around the city. Bisected by the River Torrens, offering the option to do either the southern or northern loops and loop back via the river.

  • Full circuit (around south Adelaide and North Adelaide): 18.1km
  • southern Adelaide circuit, using Torrens River to link up: 16km
  • North Adelaide circuit, using Torrens River to link up: 9km

The trail is an initiative of Adelaide City Council, who describe the trail as: “The trail is suitable for basic riders, family groups and mobility aid users.”


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Best walks to see wildflowers and flowers in the Adelaide Hills and Fleurieu Peninsula (updated)

Updated from 2018 article.

Explore some walking trails for see some of this Spring’s native wildflowers or other flowers.

We’ve listed some walking trails near Adelaide in the Adelaide Hills, and in parks and reserves on the Fleurieu Peninsula.

In this article:

  1. Wildflower and flowers walks in Adelaide and the Adelaide Hills
  2. Wildflower walks on the Fleurieu Peninsula
  3. Links to other articles to find wildflowers

Wildflowers… or weeds?

What do we mean by the term “wildflowers”? It is often understood to mean native Australian flowers growing freely in the wild. However… unfortunately some of the flowers we see growing alongside trails in our national parks and reserves are introduced species of flowers, which means they are weeds.

It could be subjective how much enjoyment someone derives from walking through nature and seeing these flowers – be they native wildflowers or introduced flowers (weeds).

Regardless – a quick public service announcement – don’t pick the flowers – either native wildflowers or weeds. The native wildflowers should be left as-is, so they keep growing in the wild. And some weeds shouldn’t be picked and transported, because it tends to encourage them to spread.

Generally in the walks we’ve listed below, we’ve tried to show native wildflowers, but we acknowledge that some of the photos will invariably be of introduced species – weeds. And a couple of the walking trails below include flowers we very much know are not native to Australia, but we’ve included the trail destinations as they’re great places to walk and see flowers and nature.

1. Wildflower and flowers walks in Adelaide and the Adelaide Hills

Black Hill Conservation Park

In Black Hill Conservation Park explore the wildflowers on the Black Hill Summit Hike (4.2km return Hard Hike) or the Ambers Gully Hike and Sugarloaves Trail (4.4km circuit, Moderate Hike).

georginagentle georginagentleBlack Hill
georginagentle georginagentleBlack Hill

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Competition #1: Share your “view from my walk” to win

Share your “view from my walk” photo using the hashtag #walktoberSA to enter our competition for a chance to win a weekly prize. Thanks to Scout Outdoor Centre there are two $50 vouchers up for grabs each week throughout October.

Take a walk in a nearby park, along the beach, along a river, in a national park or on your walk to work – anywhere in South Australia. With over 600 ideas of places to walk around SA there’s always somewhere nearby to explore on foot.

View what others have shared.

View the Competition Terms & Conditions.

Good luck and enjoy a walk! You’re just two feet from some of the best places in South Australia.

This October there are two competitions:

  • Competition #2: SCHOOL KIDS: Take a photo of something you love or find interesting as you walk to or from school. Use the hashtags #walktoberSA and #way2go to enter our competition for a chance to win a weekly prize during Weeks 1, 2 or 3 of Term 4
  • Competition #1: ANYONE: Share your “view from my walk” photo for a chance to win a weekly prize throughout October

The competition is part of Walktober – celebrating walking throughout October.

Throughout October we’re celebrating walking with WalktoberSA

Throughout October we’re celebrating walking and promoting it’s benefits for everyone with WalktoberSA.

October is ideal for walking – the temperatures are mild and the evenings are getting longer.

Discover, explore, share:

  1. Competition #1: Share your “view from my walk” photo via social media using the hashtag #walktoberSA for a chance to win a weekly prize.
  2. Competition #2: School kids, take a photo of something you love or find interesting as you walk to or from school using the hashtags #walktoberSA and #way2go for a chance to win a weekly prize.
  3. Explore trails – they’re are some great places to hike in South Australia and we’re sharing some of our favourites.
  4. Join a walking event: with a walking club or a local council or health body.

You’re just two feet from some of the best places in South Australia.

Find out more at walkingsa.org.au/walktober

Walktober might be ending, but there’s lots of places to walk and people to walk with

With the last day of October brings our Walktober SA celebration of walking to an end.

We’ve loved seeing the places you’ve been walking, awarding weekly prizes and showing you some of the best places to walk.

Use the the Heart Foundation Walking app to help keep track of your walking and reward you for stepping it up. Join or start a Heart Foundation Walking group today, use the promo code ‘Family’ and you will enter the draw to win a $500 Target voucher. Read more or download the app at walking.heartfoundation.org.au.

Grab one of our themed Best Walk lists for some ideas on where to walk:

With over 550 walks and trails on our website, there’s sure to be somewhere near you to go for a walk.

You’re just two feet from some of the best places in South Australia.

Winner of the three-day Kangaroo Island Wilderness Trail experience

Take a walk on the wild side. Win a Kangaroo Island Wilderness Trail experienceTake a walk on the wild side. Win a Kangaroo Island Wilderness Trail experience

Walking the Kangaroo Island Wilderness TrailWalking the Kangaroo Island Wilderness TrailWalking the Kangaroo Island Wilderness TrailEnjoying the Kangaroo Island Wilderness RetreatKangaroo Island Wilderness Retreat

As part of WalktoberSA – a celebration or walking throughout October – we brought you a chance to take a walk on the wild side by winning a Kangaroo Island Wilderness Trail experience thanks to SeaLink.

Thanks to everyone who entered, the winner of the competition, who was randomly selected, is Angela Versace of Panorama. Congratulations, it’ll be a superb trip!

Nature’s secrets are waiting to be discovered at every step of the 61 kilometre five-day trek, with the trail weaving its way through the most botanically unique area in all of South Australia before reaching the rugged, remote and spectacular coastline of the Southern Ocean.

SealinkSeaLink have a range of new packages to walk the Kangaroo Island Wilderness Trail by camping along the way or staying in accommodation off the trail and enjoying the luxury of a hot shower and comfortable bed each night. Walk from 2 or 3 days up to the full 5 days – view the 3 packages. The range of experiences means the beauty of the track is open for all to explore. Extend your stay after completing the trail to experience some more of the island’s unique wildlife, mouth watering food and wine and laid-back lifestyle.

Winners of “View From My Walk” photo competition, week 4

View from my walk winners, week 3

The winners of our fourth and final week of the “view from my walk” photo competition, are:

Thanks to Scout Outdoor Centre, @capturing_senses1 has won a Stratos 26 day pack. The 26L daypack provides a fully adjustable ventilated back system and hipbelt, allowing for increased comfort in warm weather. And @meltheunit has won a $50 store voucher for Scout Outdoor Centre.

The competition is part of #walktoberSA – celebrating walking throughout October.

Looking for a way to build walking into your weekly schedule?

Parkrun have regular walks and runs each Saturday, social share

Are you looking for a way to build walking into your weekly schedule?

Don’t be put off by the name Parkrun, walkers are always welcome to join. They organise free, weekly, 5km timed walks or runs. They are open to everyone, free, and are safe and easy to take part in. These are set up as events usually in pleasant parklands surroundings and are run by a volunteer network.

With 32 Parkruns held each Saturday morning throughout South Australia, there’s bound to be one near you. Search for one nearby you via their map at parkrun.com.au/events, or review the list below.

Not one near you? There might be soon, Parkrun is spreading rapidly throughout South Australia, having added 12 new events in the first 9 months of this year, since starting their first one here in SA in 2012.

Throughout October we’re celebrating walking with #walktoberSA

Walking can transform your life, hear Bill’s story using walking to recover from a stroke

Walking can transform your life. Bill talks about how after suffering a stroke he felt pretty low, and to overcome how frustrated he felt he decided to start walking, at first doing small walks then slowly challenging himself to do more.

“Back then I felt pretty hopeless at walking, but now, the personal satisfaction cant be described really, it’s nature, the birds, the bees, the waterfalls, it’s freedom, it’s so beautiful. Everyday you see something that you don’t see the day before.”

Throughout October we’re celebrating walking with #walktoberSA

Transcript:

I suffered a stroke back in 2002, and for a long time I couldn’t walk and after about 12 months of that I got very frustrated, so I tried to have a go, and that’s why I started.

I was down on the beach, feeling pretty low, because I couldn’t walk properly, and I met a friend of mine, who I used to work with, who met me on the beach. He was doing a fitness walk, as people do, and he met me and wondered why I was stumbling. We got to talking and decided he would stay with me every day thereafter helping me to take another 10, 20 yards, climb these stairs, let’s not climb, let’s do another set, that’s just how it worked… and [I feel] very very lucky.

Walking now is almost a daily thing, I try and take one day off a week, I try and force myself to do that. Usually every day 7 or 8 k’s along the beach, and then once a week I try and get and up into the Hills or something and do 20 k 25 k hike.

The most challenging walk has probably been the Overland Trail in Tasmania. When I started hiking first my granddaughter joined me to help me hike, then my brother jumped in when she popped out and we both enjoyed it, so we decided to give the Overland Trail in Tasmania a go. Climbing up over Cradle Mountain and around the lake, and that was probably the most challenging, the rain, wind, you name it, we had it.

Back then I felt pretty hopeless at it, but now, the personal satisfaction cant be described really, it’s nature, the birds, the bees, the waterfalls, it’s freedom, it’s so beautiful. Everyday you see something that you don’t see the day before.